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Feb 21, 2011 07:00 AM


OK, so I had read the posts here in advance and they were mixed. But, this place has been on my list to try for a very long time since we drive down to Hartford several times per year. We started on a high note with crunchy pickles, creamy vanilla milkshake, chocolate egg cream and chopped liver (spouse is a liver lover and gave it a thumbs up). Downhill from there. My chicken soup with kreplach had precisely one lonely kreplach floating in it. One. After I ate it, I had a bowlful of broth (which was good, but I didn't order broth). Seriously, they cannot afford to throw one or two more in there? My knish was the size of a large orange and dry, dry, dry. Sucked all the moisture out of my mouth. Potato pancakes looked good on the plate but had no potato flavor and styrofoam-like consistency. Spouse ordered the New Jersey sandwich, which he said was OK, but he only ate half. Hot turkey sandwich with fries was the best of the bunch. So, since we undoubtedly will give this place another go on a future drive, what items should we stick to on the menu? I think I was a bit overwhelmed and had a hard time deciding.

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  1. Thanks for the update. We love good deli but have never found Rein's to be consistant enough to warrant a trip there. I would rather drive to New Haven or Fairfield county or even New York for it than 15 minutes to Vernon because of the inconsistancy. People line up at Reins more because there is nothing else around rather than it being really good. Too bad, I htink a really good Jewish deli would do well in this area but past attempts have not worded. Jay

    1. We'll stop there if we're passing through there, eg going to Bean's or to Kloter's. The first time we ate there I had pastrami expecting something like Katz's in NYC but Rein's was much dryer. The last few times there I've gotten the chopped beef liver platter. I like thei chopped livers and it comes with potato salad, cole slaw, hb egg, sliced tomato, and, if you like, rye bread. Up to now I loved their potato salad, usually sweet, but this past Tuesday the potato salad was surprisingly a little bland. On the other hand the cole slaw was excellent. DW had a special lox + cream cheese + whatever sandwich on pump that she loved. I'd give it a slightly inconsistent at worst, and certainly much more reasonable prices than NYC. We'll keep going back

      1. Rein's started cutting corners several years ago. Went there probably every 2 months from 1980-2005. Then? Have to choose very carefully. Chopped liver is fine, hot open sandwiches are fine (brisket is best), but the "deli" is cheap and sometimes very sad. My last sandwich (corned beef and chopped liver) was perhaps an inch thick. Rein's used to be a value, but no longer. And the service is marginal at best- (ONE pickle? cmon!) Believe it or not breakfast may be the best meal they serve. My last 3 lunch/dinner visits were pathetic. I think JayCT is right- they don't have to have decent service because they still get business.

        2 Replies
        1. re: thos

          We just stopped at Rein's on Thurs past for breakfast. What a waste of time and money.

          We past that way around 5 times a month. There is just nowhere good for breakfast on the way to Boston or the Cape.

          At one time, around the late 70's the place was worth the stop, but not now.

          1. re: ppmaysa

            I could not agree more. In the 70s and early 80s we used to meet sis 1/2 way between her home in MA and our home in New Haven. Food was good and plentiful.

            Since about 2002, food is mediocre to bad, I drive past Rein's 4x per week and never stop. MIL wanted to stop once last year. Wife, MIL and daughters went in, I had coffee in the car. They thought I got the better meal.

            Bad food, high prices, slow service, not for me.

        2. There is a small diner right next to Rein's Deli called the Vernon Dinner which is a good alternative to Rein's . We have a bi-monthly meeting there and the food is always good especially at breakfast.. Just an Idea

          Rein's Deli
          25 Park Ave, West Springfield, MA 01089

          1 Reply
          1. re: Earle

            we have been stopping at the Vernon Dinner between NY and Boston for the past few years; no matter what time of the day, always good. Rein's is convenient but the Dinner is far better; seems to have a bigger menu also. from very large salads to full dinner diners and good coffee.

          2. Appreciate the feedback! Next time we'll stick to the chopped liver, hot sandwiches and breakfast or else skip it entirely and try Vernon Diner.